Heed the Warnings of Crones…
in them, there is Grave Wisdom
The world of Aversill is a vast and dangerous land infused with a magic that eludes the desires or designs of mortals. Beyond regions settled and tamed, scarce as they may be, other laws hold sway. Head deeper into the woods, and the forest will grow ever darker and larger. The natural world becomes oppressive and unruly. It spawns horrors beyond the natural world to which humankind falls prey through its ancestral fears. The banality of nature, magnified and foreboding, forgets its subservience to the civilized world. The creaures that crawl from these depths threaten the last vestiges of human control in the territory of the fallen kingdom of Aversill.
The unforested wastes are no different: great plains in which savages hunt; deserts deep and endless; oceans that swell with fierce storms of lightening and ice; and places worse still: their geographys beyond human reckoning. The further one heads away from human settlements, the more likely one might accidentally slip between the worlds. The Fey enslave mortals for their strange spells. Denizens of the Gloom wait at the gates to feed on the passions of life.
And thus it is that humans and their peers are forced to forge small relatively safe domains in the haunting and uniniviting places of the world—havens against great dangers spoken of in superstitious whispers and guarded against by charms. Here and there, lanterns hang in a small enclave of cabins surrounded by a great and dangerous forest. Light emerges from a campfire amid tents set on a dry windy plain and atop mountains at the ruined outskirts of a once great dwarven city In places like these, most mortals live out their normal lives by day, afraid to stray too far and terrified by the darkness of night that brings with it strange noises and phantom lights that bounce about in the distance signaling raids or worse.
Still others have learned to live on the periphery between the small areas of the map which are known and the great gulfs of darkness that lie between them. They call the most mundane wastes their homes and territories, often by keeping the worst terrors at bay with armed guards, trained soldiers, and unswerving vigilance. Patrolling the edge of their lands, they mutter silent prayers that their walls keep, that their roads and bridges hold, and that nothing will come out of the wild to truly challenge the sanctity of their homes. Only the terrifying or the mad stray farther out.
But even in the midst of the deep and unabiding chaos in which one is as apt to get lost forever as one is to find safe passage, even in places as uninviting as those that lay beyond the limits of the villages and townships, mighty cities and kingdoms have been forged by brave warrior-kings who have forced, through their might, the darkness to hold at bay. Many of these cities are as enormous as they are exotic—others are places as oppressive as the horrors they have displaced, and have only managed to hold their demesne through fear and terrible rituals that no mortal should have ken. Occasionally the gods send their favor by cursing those who would threaten mankind. Other times, it is the cursed themselves, imbued with the righteous fury of the Gods, who are responsible for holding the darkness at bay even as their lives and sanity disappear.
But there is ample reason to risk life and limb by heading out into the wastes. In the darkness beyond civilization are dangers abhorrent to the children of the gods, ruins filled with treasure from kingdoms which no longer have names, and worlds beyond the dark dark woods peopled with immortal creatures whose allegiance can mean success or failure for the fledgling kingdoms of human kind. For those willing to take the risk, there are chances for riches, power, and grace, but more than that, there are equal chances to elevate one’s self above the masses that huddle in their huts, to bring the poor mortals along, or even to take control with the power that one finds ’out there.